|U.S. House, Michigan, District 3|
|Michigan State Senate|
|Bachelor's||University of Michigan|
|J.D.||Detroit College of Law|
|Place of birth||Grand Rapids, MI|
Upon graduating from East Grand Rapids High School, Pestka attended Grand Rapids Community College and later graduated from the University of Michigan in 1974. He became Assistant Prosecuting Attorney for Kent County after receiving his law degree from the Detroit College of Law in 1978. He became a member of the Kent County Board of Commissioners in 1992 and served three terms. In 1998, Pestka was elected to the Michigan House of Representatives, where he served two terms. In 2003, then-Governor Jennifer Granholm appointed Pestka as judge for the 17th Circuit Court in Kent County. In 2009, Pestka left the court to help his father run his family business.
Pestka's career highlights are listed below.
- Attorney, Private Practice (1980-present)
- Assistant Prosecuting Attorney, Kent County (1978-1980)
- Judge, 17th Circuit Court (2003-2009)
- Michigan State Senator (1992-2002)
- Commissioner, Kent County's 11th District (1992-1998)
Pestka was defeated by incumbent Justin Amash. Pestka ran in the 2012 election for the U.S. House to represent Michigan's 3rd District. He defeated Trevor Thomas in the August 7 Democratic primary. He faced Republican incumbent Justin Amash and Bill Gelineau (L) in the general election on November 6, 2012.
|U.S. House, Michigan District 3 General Election, 2012|
|Republican||Justin Amash Incumbent||52.6%||171,675|
|Source: Michigan Secretary of State "Official Election Results, 2012 General Election"|
|Michigan's 3rd Congressional District Democratic Primary, 2012|
The following is a campaign ad released by Pestka on September 20, 2012.
Steve Pestka, "Supporting"
|Steve Pestka vs. Justin Amash|
|Poll||Steve Pestka||Justin Amash||Margin of Error||Sample Size|
|(August 18-21, 2012)||50%||42%||+/-4.4||Unknown|
|Note: The polls above may not reflect all polls that have been conducted in this race. Those displayed are a random sampling chosen by Ballotpedia staff. If you would like to nominate another poll for inclusion in the table, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org|
On his campaign website, Pestka lists thirteen issues. They are:
Excerpt: "Advancement of the middle class and the American way of life is one of my most important goals. Our middle class should be supported and strengthened – a strong America depends on a strong middle class."
Excerpt: "We need to continue building a diverse economy with good-paying jobs. Michigan’s historic manufacturing base – building both cars and furniture – did a lot more than just teach the world about those products; it taught the world how to develop a dynamic economy. No country can leave behind its manufacturing base, and we need to implement policies which support Michigan's great manufacturers, and which will lead to higher wages, better jobs, and a more educated and stronger workforce."
- Taxation and the deficit
Excerpt: "The deficit and taxation are tied together. While the current debt level is unsustainable, there has to be a comprehensive effort to draft an equitable tax system so that all taxpayers are treated fairly."
Excerpt: "I believe there needs to be a major investment in infrastructure. Investment in our roads and bridges helps to strengthen our homes, our neighborhoods, our state, and our country. Infrastructure projects will also help create more good jobs and get Michigan residents back to work."
Excerpt: "Our state – and our entire country - belongs to all of us and it needs to be protected. As a state legislator, I consistently had a 100 percent voter rating from the League of Conservation Voters and I will continue to fight to protect the environment in Congress."
Excerpt: "We need a sensible approach to our energy future. We should encourage and pursue alternative energy, but we also must understand that those sources won’t immediately fulfill our energy needs overnight."
- Health care
Excerpt: "I believe all human beings have a right to health care. A healthier society is less expensive to maintain than an unhealthy one. We need to pursue common sense health care policies that expand accessibility, demand quality, and reign in costs."
- Social safety net
Excerpt: "Medicare and Social Security were tremendous steps toward senior Americans being able to enjoy their golden years with a level of dignity and comfort. We need to strengthen and continue these programs, not dismantle them."
- K-12 Education
Excerpt: "I am a strong proponent of public schools. They are the foundation of our great nation. We have a responsibility to our children and educators to make sure that our public schools have the resources they need so that every student receives a quality education."
- Higher education and student debt
Excerpt: "College attainment is becoming today what a high school diploma was a generation ago. If our country is to compete for good-paying jobs and industries in a global economy, we cannot continue on our current path of saddling our young people with tens of thousands in debt before they even enter the job market."
Excerpt: "Family farms have always been extremely important to West Michigan. We need to commit to policies that will better allow our farmers to safely bring their products to market and ensure families can maintain their farms from generation to generation."
- Foreign Policy
Excerpt: "The United States is and will remain the dominant figure in the world. It has always been a model and beacon of hope for other nations. Our need for engagement and protection of our national interests must be a balanced approach that still respects other countries. We need to remain committed to our allies and continue working towards a safer and more peaceful world."
- Working to solve our problems
Excerpt: "My entire professional experience in business and in public service has always placed an emphasis on bringing people together to solve complex problems. I have never promoted a narrow ideological viewpoint, and I never will."
|United States House of Representatives, 2012 - Steve Pestka Campaign Contributions|
|Total Raised by Election Winner||$1,313,803|
|Total Spent by Election Winner||$1,193,611|
|Top contributors to Steve Pestka's campaign committee|
|International Assn of Fire Fighters||$10,000|
|United Auto Workers||$10,000|
|United Food & Commercial Workers Union||$10,000|
|National Education Assn||$8,500|
|Top 5 industries that contributed to campaign committee|
|Public Sector Unions||$30,500|
|Building Trade Unions||$24,000|
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Pestka is married to his wife, Alicia. They have one child together.
- Official Campaign Page
- Twitter Account
- Facebook Page
- WoodTV News Video
- Steve Pestka's Vote Smart Profile
- Vote Pestka "Biography" May 21, 2012
- Pestka's Vote Smart Profile, Career (Accessed: October 5, 2012
- Politico "2012 Election Map, Michigan"
- Associated Press primary results
- Pestka's Campaign Website, News (Accessed: October 5, 2012)
- YouTube channel
- Vote Pestka "Issues" June 5, 2012
- Open Secrets " 2012 Election Cycle," Accessed March 2013
- Pestka's Vote Smart Profile, Biography (Accessed: October 5, 2012)